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Taiwan holds APEC O2O Summit to promote digital transformation

2018/07/02 22:45:26

Economic Affairs Minister Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津, fourth from left) and Deputy Kaohsiung Mayor Shih Che (史哲, third from left); CNA file photo

Kaohsiung, July 2 (CNA) The two-day APEC O2O Summit 2018 opened in Kaohsiung on Monday to promote digital transformation through online to offline (O2O) services in cooperation with Southeast Asian countries.

Small and medium-sized enterprises in Taiwan can use the summit as a platform to boost international exchanges and enhance their digital competitiveness through digital transformation in the digital age, Economic Affairs Minister Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said in his opening speech.

Deputy Kaohsiung Mayor Shih Che (史哲), who addressed the summit in English, said the city has been pushing interaction between startups in Taiwan and Southeast Asia.

Ten startups from the Asia-Pacific region have been invited to the summit to hook up with more than 50 local startups in the fields of Fintech, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and AR/VR applications.

The local startups are from a variety of industries, including digital content, biotechnology, IoT, and innovative services, according to Kaohsiung's Economic Development Bureau, which helped put the summit together.

The emphasis on startups at the summit reflects an initiative called "APEC Online-to-Offline (O2O) Initiative -- Unleash the Potential of SMEs through Digital Transformation for a Shared Future" that was proposed jointly by Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, according to the APEC website.

The summit will feature three themes -- showcasing startups, experiencing AR/VR applications, and discussing international investment, the bureau said.

In addition to startups, governmental officials, O2O experts and representatives of multinational corporations from the U.S. and 20 Asia-Pacific economies have also been invited to take part in the two-day summit, according to the bureau.

(By Chen Ja-fo and Hsu Hsiao-ling)